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National Guard members from Venezuela arrested on suspicion of cocaine trafficking

November 7, 2017  |  Posted by: Francesca Falzarano
National Guard members from Venezuela arrested on suspicion of cocaine trafficking

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After 140 bricks of cocaine originating from Venezuela was located in Santo Domingo, a high-ranking socialist indicted on charges that he accepted bribes from drug traffickers praised the arrests of several subordinates.

On Saturday, five members of the Venezuelan National Guard were facing charges after a cocaine trafficking scheme was uncovered in the Dominican Republic, Local10 News reported.

General Néstor Reverol, the commander of the Venezuelan National Guard and one of President Nicolas Maduro’s top supporters, told the media during a press conference on Friday that four sergeants and a lieutenant were trafficking drugs out of the Simón Bolívar de Maiquetía Airport.

Reverol said the aim was to “dismantle the gang until getting to the leaders, bosses, of the organization.”

Four suitcases with the drugs departed on a Láser Airlines flight to the Dominican Republic. Officials in Santo Domingo allege that the U.S. was the expected final destination of the cocaine. U.S. DEA agents believe Venezuela has long served as a trafficking hub for cocaine out of Colombia.

Despite accusations from the U.S. alleging that Reverol played a role in the “Cartel of the Suns” involving high-ranking members of the military in Venezuela who were securing cocaine shipments from Colombia, he was promoted last year.

The 53-year-old former leader of the Venezuelan anti-drug agency is now the minister of the people’s power for interior relations and justice of Venezuela.

In 2016, U.S. prosecutors unsealed a 2015 indictment against Reverol charging him with accepting bribes to assist drug traffickers. His nephews — 30-year-old Franqui Francisco Flores de Freitas and 29-year-old Efraín Antonio Campo Flores — were found guilty in a conspiracy to import cocaine to the U.S. They were apprehended in Haiti.

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